Community trust in fresh wind turbine bid

Sandy Duncan will discover on Thursday if he has won planning permission.

A north-east community trust has unveiled plans to construct a wind turbine on the outskirts of a tiny village.

Fraserburgh Development Trust has lodged a planning application with Aberdeenshire Council for permission to install a 249ft turbine on farmland near Strichen.

The group has argued the structure will inject some of its profits into community projects within the village – including the development of a garden centre to support people with learning disabilities.

To which purpose, rent will be paid to the land’s owners, Howford Farm and Garden Centre.

Energy created by the structure will be plugged into the national grid.

In a design statement submitted alongside the application, Buckie developers NB Planning and Architecture claimed local reaction to the scheme had been “generally positive”.

It added: “In agreement with the local village, 20% of the annual profits will be ring-fenced for use on particular worthy projects.

“Local residents will be involved in deciding how the money will be used. Consequently, 100% of the income will be redirected back towards community benefit within the FDT postcode area, with 20% ring-fenced for Strichen.

“As a result of the potential social impact upon the village of Strichen, the wind turbine project at Howford has attracted much local support.”

NB Planning added that because proposals for a large-scale wind farm at Mormond Hill had fallen through, concerns about the cumulative impact turbines would have on the area had diminished.

If approved, the turbine would be on the site for up to 25 years. And, so far, no consultees have objected to the scheme.

Earlier this year, FDT withdrew a planning application for a 259ft turbine at Claystiles.

The Ministry of Defence raised concerns that the development would cause false aircraft readings in the area.

No reason was given for the project’s collapse in letters to planners.

The trust was contacted for a comment last night but did not respond.